I’ve been working with project management for two years now and even though I understand more and more, most of the time I still feel like a newbie in the field, when does this feeling stop?
I think if you asked a lot of Project Managers who have been working in the field for many years they will tell you that they still feel like this at regular points throughout their careers. In some ways that is the great thing about working in project management, a new project comes along and you’re back at the beginning. A new team to put together, a new solution to deliver, something new to learn about the new and unique lifecycle you’re delivering against.
Those same Project Managers will also tell you that the feeling of being a newbie in all aspects of delivering projects (not just new projects) lessens over time as you build up more and more hands-on experience and skills. You’ll develop not just the technical aspects, also the people’s side which changes over time as you acquire more and more battle scars and triumphs.
When those same Project Managers take you to one side and really tell you how they feel, you are likely to hear them talking about feelings that sound like imposter syndrome – that feeling that they are somehow winging it and they’ll get found out eventually as being a fraud. Even those people who look like they’re brilliant at managing projects, even they will have the occasional doubt and fears.
Two years is still the beginning of your career in project management, an exciting time where anything is possible with lots to learn from everyone you meet along the way. AS you experience the highs and lows that working in projects can bring, just remember to take a lesson away with you every time and file it away in that thing we call life experiences.